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Thread: Buying a pool for the first time! Please help... Clueless!

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    Default Buying a pool for the first time! Please help... Clueless!

    Hi Everyone,

    My fiance and I just put a deposit down on a pool. We have shopped 3 different pool retailers in Chicago and have literally been told 3 different things. We are so confused and are now questioning our original plan. Here is what we have on hold (forgive me if I'm forgetting something or don't have the terminology down)

    Pool: Wilbar Quest 15 ft 54in Stainless Steel Side Panel
    Filter:Haywood SwimPro 110 (debating on upgrading to the 150 for $20.00 more)
    Pump: Haywood Swim Pro 2Hp 2Spd (Great Escape recommended this... I've read it's overkill to have 2HP. We figured we'd run it on low majority of the time.)
    Sanitizing System: Nature2 Vision Pro Vessel Water Sanitizer (I know nothing about this!)

    I'm hoping for some advice on Filter, Pump and Sanitizer. I grew up with an 18ft pool, sand filter and no sanitizing machines, so this is all new to me and not to mention the last time I had a pool was 20 years ago!

    One more thing... We debated between a 12 and 15 ft. A 12 ft would fit our space soooo perfectly. A 15ft would fit; however there is a concrete patio that we have to keep in mind. With the 15 foot, I feel we'd be cutting it close... my fiance thinks it would be fine. Then again, he is ok with people having to bend and duck around top ledge just so we can have a bigger pool! LOL (We have a 3 year old, so it will be primarily used for the 3 of us.) I'm trying to account for the amount of space we need to plan for in addition to the 15ft. Although the pool is 15ft, how many inches or feet should I add to the circle to get a real feel of how big it will be? How many feet would you suggest I leave from the pool top ledge to the patio? We are worried that 12ft may start to feel cramped after purchasing it!

    Thanks for reading and any advice you can give me! It is much appreciated!

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    Default Re: Buying a pool for the first time! Please help... Clueless!

    You certainly don't need that big of a pump. I'll let someone else give you a more specific pump recommendation but you definitely don't need a 2hp. Regarding filters --- I know nothing about the one you mentioned but my $0.02 is that a sand filter is way less trouble than a cartridge filter. If you do get a sand filter, a bigger one is better than a smaller one. The best pump/filter setup is a less powerful pump paired with a big sand filter.

    Don't get the Nature 2 thing. Not worth it. It doesn't kill viruses, etc. in your water. Plus, it adds copper. You don't want copper. Most people think it is chlorine that stains things and turns blonde hair green but it isn't chlorine. It is copper! Just use chlorine to sanitize your water.

    Do a lot of reading here on the forum and on our sister website www.poolsolutions.com. Lots of good info there as well.

    I'm going to put some links for you to read. But, until your registration is completed, you'll need to copy the links and then paste them into a browser window after you log out in order to be able to see the rest of the forum.

    Our Super Simple Start-up Recipe (which would be a great way for you to get your pool up and running):> http://pool9.net/ssr/
    Search with this link. It will search all of Pool Forum plus Pool Solutions:> http://pool9.net/search

    12ft or 15ft ---- is preference.

    Welcome to the Pool Forum!

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    Default Re: Buying a pool for the first time! Please help... Clueless!

    Thanks so much for the reply Watermom! I'm so grateful to have found you guys. There is so much information out there and it seems I can't trust any pool retailer! They have all given me a different story. I'm actually waiting for a call from the pool salesman as I type. I'm going to have him price out the package without the Nature2 and downgrade the pump. The difference in price in going from a 2HP to the 1 wasn't much at all, but I was worried about it increasing my electricity too much. I was told the 2HP 2spd uses 3 amps on low and 13 on high. Just didn't know if having the larger pump actually helps keep the water clean. (against clueless). I've done soo much reading over the past 2 days. still trying to get the basics down! Again thanks for your help!!

    Oh and one more thing... You mentioned the sand filter is less trouble... Can you explain how? I was told the opposite, so now I'm conflicted. My worries are back washing and the maintenance that goes along with that. Also, I'm on a water meter and water is super expensive here... Would I lose water when I backwash? Thanks!!

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    Default Re: Buying a pool for the first time! Please help... Clueless!

    Having a pump that is too big does not help keep the water clean. In fact, it does just the opposite. It pushes the debris through the filter with so much force that it doesn't actually filter anything.

    A sand filter is easier because when you have to clean it, you simply turn a handle. With a cartridge filter, you actually have to remove the cartridge, maybe soak it to get it clean, hose it down. A messy job. You do lose some water with each backwash on a sand filter, but it isn't a lot. If you buy a large sand filter, you shouldn't have to backwash it very often. It is mostly just a preference thing. Some people prefer cartridges, but not many.

    You don't even need a 1hp pump. A 3/4hp pump is plenty big enough and maybe a 200lb sand filter. Or even bigger. You can't get too big with a sand filter. (For comparison for you --- I have a 27ft AG pool which is approximately 18,000 gallons. I have a 1/2hp full-rated inground pump paired with a 300lb. sand filter. Even if you go with the 15ft pool, your volume will only be about 5500 gallons. You certainly don't need a big pump.)

    There are other members on the forum who have more knowledge of pumps than I do. Let me see if I can get one of them to chime in here and give you more specific advice.

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    Default Re: Buying a pool for the first time! Please help... Clueless!

    @Lisa, the 3/4HP pump you're familiar with is an in-ground pump. There are HP rating games that go on with AG pumps; in most lines of AG pumps there is no such thing as a 3/4 HP pump.

    @Nina. Skip the Nature2 unit: it adds copper, which does kill algae, but also stains pools and turns light hair green. If you DO want to add copper, there are much cheaper ways to do it.

    + Absolutely, get the bigger filter.

    + Get the smallest 2 speed pump they have. If they have a 1HP 2 speed, get that. But a 2HP 2 speed is better for you than a 1HP 1 speed. You'll run it on low speed almost always -- which is quieter, saves electricity . . . and filters better!

    12' vs 15'? Can't help on that -- people rarely wish they got a smaller pool, but if you can't fit a 15' in easily that's an issue.

    For what it's worth, I always check registration addresses as a way to keep spammers out. (I'm the only one that can see those -- even Lisa who's been a moderator here for years and years doesn't see those.) Anyhow -- it looks like your next door neighbor has an above ground that -- according to Google -- is a 18' or 20'. It's definitely a snug fit. But if you can peek over the fence, it could give you an idea about what you'd prefer.

    . . . membership upgraded.

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    Default Re: Buying a pool for the first time! Please help... Clueless!

    Quote Originally Posted by PoolDoc View Post
    @Lisa, the 3/4HP pump you're familiar with is an in-ground pump. There are HP rating games that go on with AG pumps; in most lines of AG pumps there is no such thing as a 3/4 HP pump.

    @Nina. Skip the Nature2 unit: it adds copper, which does kill algae, but also stains pools and turns light hair green. If you DO want to add copper, there are much cheaper ways to do it.

    + Absolutely, get the bigger filter.

    + Get the smallest 2 speed pump they have. If they have a 1HP 2 speed, get that. But a 2HP 2 speed is better for you than a 1HP 1 speed. You'll run it on low speed almost always -- which is quieter, saves electricity . . . and filters better!

    12' vs 15'? Can't help on that -- people rarely wish they got a smaller pool, but if you can't fit a 15' in easily that's an issue.

    For what it's worth, I always check registration addresses as a way to keep spammers out. (I'm the only one that can see those -- even Lisa who's been a moderator here for years and years doesn't see those.) Anyhow -- it looks like your next door neighbor has an above ground that -- according to Google -- is a 18' or 20'. It's definitely a snug fit. But if you can peek over the fence, it could give you an idea about what you'd prefer.

    . . . membership upgraded.
    Thanks for the replies.

    Ben- I checked out my neighbors pool. You were spot on, it's an 18' and in my opinion a little too big for the space. It definitely helped me envision what a 15 footer would look like in my space. Thanks for the membership upgrade! I can't tell you how valuable this site has been over the last few days! Thanks.

    We decided on the 15'... now we are trying to decided whether we go with the 52'' (with metal side rails) or 54'' (ALL resin.) In your opinion does the 2 in height in water actually make much of a difference? I'm only 5'3 and my fiance is on the shorter side (5'7.) We have a 3 year old and are planning to be in our home for at the very least 10 years.

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    Default Re: Buying a pool for the first time! Please help... Clueless!

    Quote Originally Posted by Watermom View Post
    Having a pump that is too big does not help keep the water clean. In fact, it does just the opposite. It pushes the debris through the filter with so much force that it doesn't actually filter anything.

    A sand filter is easier because when you have to clean it, you simply turn a handle. With a cartridge filter, you actually have to remove the cartridge, maybe soak it to get it clean, hose it down. A messy job. You do lose some water with each backwash on a sand filter, but it isn't a lot. If you buy a large sand filter, you shouldn't have to backwash it very often. It is mostly just a preference thing. Some people prefer cartridges, but not many.

    You don't even need a 1hp pump. A 3/4hp pump is plenty big enough and maybe a 200lb sand filter. Or even bigger. You can't get too big with a sand filter. (For comparison for you --- I have a 27ft AG pool which is approximately 18,000 gallons. I have a 1/2hp full-rated inground pump paired with a 300lb. sand filter. Even if you go with the 15ft pool, your volume will only be about 5500 gallons. You certainly don't need a big pump.)

    There are other members on the forum who have more knowledge of pumps than I do. Let me see if I can get one of them to chime in here and give you more specific advice.
    Thanks Watermom! This is great info; very helpful!

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    Default Re: Buying a pool for the first time! Please help... Clueless!

    Quote Originally Posted by nina811 View Post
    Ben- I checked out my neighbors pool. You were spot on, it's an 18' and in my opinion a little too big for the space.
    You're probably younger than I am -- most people are, now that I'm 60 -- so this may not affect you the same way, but isn't amazing that I could tell figure that out in 1 minute using an instantly available space-photo of your back yard?

    I'm old enough to remember when my parents got their first TV, an old green *heavy* thing with a 12" screen, because Daddy wanted to watch the news about the Cuban missile crisis. It stuck in my mind, because I remember realizing that he was scared, which scared me, because he was is a WWII combat infantry vet and usually didn't get scared.

    I just saw a report a few days ago, that we soon may have LIVE video from space for big cities and news events! That's a lot of change in 60 years!

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    Default Re: Buying a pool for the first time! Please help... Clueless!

    Quote Originally Posted by nina811 View Post
    ... now we are trying to decided whether we go with the 52'' (with metal side rails) or 54'' (ALL resin.) In your opinion does the 2 in height in water actually make much of a difference? I'm only 5'3 and my fiance is on the shorter side (5'7.) We have a 3 year old and are planning to be in our home for at the very least 10 years.
    I'd choose resin, not for the height but because you expect the pool to last 10 years. I'm concerned with the steel bottom rails on my pool as they are always in contact with the ground.
    12'x24' oval 7.7K gal AG vinyl pool; ; Hayward S270T sand filter; Hayward EcoStar SP3400VSP pump; hrs; K-2006; PF:16

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